Alone Time for Introverts

Meridian, Idaho

I read an article almost seven years ago and part of the article still resonates with me and provided me with one of my favorite quotes.

The article, written by Ellen Tien, first appeared in O, The Oprah Magazine and was entitled She’s Happily Married, Dreaming of Divorce.


While the article primarily addressed the author’s “Mid-Wife Crisis”, the part that stuck with me for so many years is about alone time.

Here’s the line that hit me the hardest and the quote that I love:

Our mothers feared being left alone. We crave time alone. Alone time is the new heroin.


Cell phones, email, cable television news, etc. combine to instill a sense of immediacy for everything in our lives and everyone else’s lives. It feels like we all have less alone time and even less down time than we ever have had.

I crave alone time like a junkie craves his/her heroin fix. Always have, and always will.

A recent article on CNN ‘Alone Time’ is Really Good for You talked about the benefits of alone time.

The article includes these reasons:

  • Being alone will make you more creative.
  • And probably make you work harder.
  • Spending time alone can help with depression, especially in teens.
  • It helps clear your mind.
  • You get to do what you actually want to do.

And the most important one for me:

  • If you’re an introvert, alone time is key to your happiness.

downloadIt’s no secret that introverts interact differently with the world — and one of the most important things to introverts is their solo time.

“Think of each of us as having a cup of energy available. For introverts, most social interactions take a little out of that cup instead of filling it the way it does for extroverts. Most of us like it. We’re happy to give, and love to see you. When the cup is empty though, we need some time to refuel.”

Like many introverts, I can pretend I’m a ‘shy extrovert’ for short periods of time to be ‘relatively’ socially acceptable. But those periods produce a need to cocoon in our comfortable introversion and regroup.

That’s our fix and it’s as important to us as heroin is to a junkie…